The Fukuoka Prefecture is vast and in total, this region has a population of more than five million, with both the cities of Fukuoka and Kitakyushu each being home to over one million inhabitants and amongst Japan’s biggest. Fukuoka has long been the most important city in the Kyushu region and contains plenty of sights to see and things to do, including a number of prominent sports stadiums, concert halls and even an impressive local baseball team, known locally as the Softbank Fukuoka Hawks.
Visitors staying in Fukuoka are advised to search out the local English-language magazine ‘Fukuoka Now’, which is a monthly guide to everything that is happening in the city and is available at the main tourist offices. Other useful publications include ‘Rainbow’, an events newsletter published by the Fukuoka International Association, and also ‘Fukuoka on Foot’, where a number of walking trails around the city are described in detail.
The city is beautiful. It is nestled in between mountains, trees, and beaches. The people actually seemed surprisingly friendly too. Even though I like where I’m at in South Korea, I haven’t experienced this type of welcoming from Koreans. The city is clean. And, you must watch out for bicyclists! I’ve never seen so many bicycles in my life.
The driving on the left side of the road, walking on the left side of the sidewalk, and riding on the left side of the escalator felt odd though. Everything was expensive too. Subway rides were way overpriced. I quickly learned to get the all-day pass.
I almost felt a little at home. Everything was so Westernized, yet the city seemed to hold onto its Eastern roots. It felt like a good mix of different cultures.
Speaking of different cultures, I saw way more white people than I’ve seen in a while too. I can also definitely notice the difference between Korean and Japanese people. Before I moved to this side of the world, I couldn’t tell one Asian person apart from the other, as far as their nationality was concerned. I noticed a much more “exotic” look to the Japanese. People dress much differently too. Women wear way more revealing clothing from what I noticed. That’s probably due in large part to the Westernization of the culture.